The House Of Love – In concert at l’Olympia, Paris – January 24, 1991 – Dave Roberts Collection –
The House Of Love in concert this week – recorded at the Olympia in Paris on January 24, 1991 and graciously supplied to me by Dave Roberts, to whom I owe a debt of gratitude.
By all accounts, this is the secret gig that was hinted at and which finally surfaced on January 24th to a packed and very enthusiastic house.
Before COVID arrived on the scene and promptly screwed everything up, there was a goodly amount of anticipation over an upcoming American tour for HOL, which was to start in May of 2020. Needless to say, it didn’t happen. Last January, Slicing Up Eyeballs ran a very enthusiastic piece on The House Of Love, citing their upcoming tour as the catalyst:
“The House of Love will return to North America this May for the first time in nearly 30 years, playing an 11-date tour to celebrate the 30th anniversary of its second self-titled studio album, the so-called “Butterfly album” that marked the band’s first inroads in the U.S.
It won’t, however, by the full band. In a handwritten note about the tour posted by Brooklyn Vegan, frontman Guy Chadwick explains that his partner, guitarist Terry Bickers, will not be participating. He writes:
“Over the years, we have had may offers to come to the U.S.A. but I have never been able to persuade Terry Bickers to come, which is why when we got the offer of this tour, I decided to put a new live band together. We have been rehearsing solidly and it’s no holds barred House of Love!”
It’s not yet known who’ll be joining Chadwick for the North American dates. The U.K. indie legends’ Facebook page lists the current lineup as Chadwick, Bickers, original drummer Pete Evans and bassist Matt Jury, who joined the band when it first reunited in 2003, nearly a decade after its initial breakup — and 14 years after Bickers originally left the band.
The reformed House of Love has released two albums this century, 2005’s Days Run Away and 2013’s She Paints Words in Red. The band in recent years has celebrated the 30th anniversary of its self-titled debut — 1988’s The House of Love, not to be confused with 1987 compilation The House of Love or the aforementioned 1990 sophomore set The House of Love.
In his handwritten note about the North American tour, Chadwick talks about writing that 1990 self-titled album, which features “Shine On,” “I Don’t Know Why I Love You” and “Beatles and the Stones”:
“It’s hard to believe it’s over 30 years ago our debut album came out in the USA and that the songs still mean so much to people. When I wrote these songs in my tiny squalid bedsit in Islington, using an ironing board as a table for my Fostex 4-track and my Roland 808 drum machine, I never dreamed I was making a record that would resonate so much and influence so many other bands. We’re looking forward to playing those classics, plus songs from later albums and some new material.”
The House of Love, which last played the U.S. in 1992, will open its tour May 6 in New York City and wrap up May 23 in San Francisco. Check out the band’s website for ticket details.”
One hopes the tour can be revived and the venues re-booked at some point soon (I hear rumors of things going back to normal, but considering the vagaries of this pandemic, nothing is mixed in stone.
However, if you’re like me, you would go to a concert if it was the opening of a door at this point.
In the meantime, more happy, more delirious times with The House Of Love as they were on January 24th 1991 in Paris.
Crank it up and enjoy – and special thanks to Dave Roberts for making it available.